Wednesday, May 23, 2012


Here's one of my most recent articles for our local newspaper, which explains the references to specific people and such. I find that people LUV to see their name in print, or maybe that's just me. Either way, I find I LUV to see your name in print, so I do it. Hopefully, nobody thinks a libel suit is in order.

I was raised in a 1970‘s two story mansion—okay, maybe they weren’t so much “stories” as they were “levels” in bi-level. But it must have been over 2,000 square feet combined, which was unheard of at the time. Moving from about a block away, I remember watching all summer long as the plans came to fruition through the skilled carpentry of Clair’s dad, George Smedley. 
Before the finishing touches, we decided to have a sleep over on the bare floors. We brought in our 10 inch black and white television and dumped a bag of penny candy on the floor. One of us kid’s digestive system rebelled, and somebody—I forget who (Chris)—puked his guts out all over the sub-flooring. Though we cleaned and scrubbed, the stain was still evident. But we thought it was kind of exciting that underneath the carpet, there was a special “secret” that only our family knew about. I guess it’s not a secret anymore. But don’t worry, friends, it’s likely that only one of you is standing on that spot right now.
I’ll never forget moving in—I couldn’t believe my luck. The popcorn ceiling set aglow with sparkling diamond flakes. The not one, not two, but THREE “We must be rich!” bathrooms. And what impressed me most—the glorious shades of brown and gold sculpted carpet. I’d never seen anything so magnificent in my entire life. I’d sit and run my fingers through it over and over and over again, reveling in the rich textures and earthy color combinations. It was the first thing I showed my friends when they came for a tour, and they were just as dazzled.  
In our neighborhood, all of the backyards abutted, as fencing was too expensive and unnecessary. This made for great big softball games and dart gun wars as well as pea picking parties in the community garden of Pat and Pam Handrahan...whether or not they wished their harvest to be an exercise in socialism. As a side note, they were the very first to install a fence...which is really weird. 
Since we were one of the first houses built in our subdivision, we (me) used the holes and hills of the new construction sites to practice being bionic. I remember babysitting at the Graham’s, sitting on their back porch and telling Dane, who was two inches taller than me, that I was, in fact, bionic. He was unbelieving. So I think I may have done something like lift him by his armpits high above my head to prove it. And then I may or may not have refused to put him down until he admitted I absolutely was bionic. Which should concern all the rest of the families in the neighborhood who hired me to tend their children over the years, but what’s done is done, people. That’s what statutes of limitation are for. 
We wanted our street to look like downtown Farmington, so we planted the fastest growing trees we could find—cotton-less cottonwoods. Lie. They were cheap and tawdry, and our neighbors cursed us year after year as the 50 foot monsters dropped piles of dead leaves and yes, COTTON, on peripheral lawns. Still, they held tree houses and rope swings for a good 15 years until their exceedingly shallow root systems gave way and they all came crashing down around us. But we needed a new roof, anyway, so it was all good.
We spent summer evenings playing night games and flirting, and I told Kenny Stoker that I just luuuuuuved going jogging, too! So maybe he could pick me up along the way? 
Which he did. 
And about half a block later—gasping, doubled over and pretty sure I could taste blood—I waved him on, telling him to leave me behind and save himself...
...Which he also did. 
And that is how I fell out of love with him.
Anyway, I know what you’re thinking—what does any of this have to do with anything? The answer is: hard to say. Maybe to suggest that we were easily impressed and entertained back then? Or to bring back sculptured carpet and popcorn ceilings? Or  even just to call Kenny out for leaving me to die in the gutter. The important thing here is, I have access to a newspaper that will print these musings, which for me, is akin to giving candy to a baby—Simply Irresistible. 
And it is why I now say, GOD BLESS THE ISLANDER!  And it’s very permissive heart.

Monday, May 7, 2012


I'm totally disappointed in me, too. But just so you know, I check a lot of YOUR blogs, and find the same dam thing I found three months ago too. So now we're even.

Something noteworthy: I'm going to be famous on account of I've been cast to play the part of "hostess" for a Scentsy training video. Mm hmm. That's right. So basically, Princess Lisa who naturally smells of licorice and roses already, will be adding a touch of cinnamon buns to the mix. Try not to gnaw on my neck.

Of course, the obvious problem here is my disturbing UN-photogenic-ness, (new word) which is clearly illustrated by the eyeball swapping which occurred after our last family photo session. And far as I know, nobody has figured out a strong routine to spot-train faces and necks. Oh, sure. They've got all kinds of exercise DVDs for abs, thighs and fannies. But chins of steel? Nothing.

Now apparently, this bad picture taking is nothing new. I made a HUGE mistake the other day, and looked at our engagement photos. Three strikes against them—first, taken in the 80's. 'Nuff said. Second, hadn't discovered eyebrow pencil yet. And third, the photographer was my own father, and he shot me through the lens of love.

The lens of love is a really, really serious judgment warper. Teaspoon of permed, blond hair, wearing a white suit against a white background? Bad.
Not ethereal. Not romantic. Just bad.

Allowing daughter's misguided sense of fashion to take center stage, in that she wrapped a cheap chain belt around her wrist nine times and called it a bracelet? Bad.
Not edgy. Not stylish. Just bad.

Saying it's a good idea to have your daughter wear her fiance's enormous tortoise shell gradient shaded eyeglasses and hold him on her lap? Bad.
Not funny. Not ironic. Just bad.

Anyway, there wasn't a single shot in that whole steaming pile that could be called pleasing to the eye. But Dad didn't know it, because to him, I was absolutely beautiful. And this was shown time and time again, as later on he took pictures of me a week after giving birth, all puffy and lactating, looking down at my red faced baby. Another time, shot from below as I struggled with two toddlers on picture day, wearing an empire waist dress that just SCREAMED, "I don't know who I am anymore."And all of those times, he was so excited to show them to me.

"Oh, Lisa. I took the most beautiful pictures of you the other day when you weren't looking. Just wait until you see them!"

And when I did, it took my best efforts not to shriek with alarm and curse righteously at the top of my lungs. HOLY &%#!

Anyway, I can't blame him for loving me. But I can blame him for capturing it on Kodak. Now if you'll all kindly place the 3-D love lenses on while watching this training video, I'd sure appreciate it. Because that's what friends do. And then they lie about what they saw.